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Drive-thru Starbucks in Village at Newtown is Back on Track!

Drive-thru Starbucks in Village at Newtown is Back on Track! | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

At a May 9, 2018, public hearing, Newtown Township Supervisors unanimously denied an application by Starbucks to build a drive-thru restaurant in the Village at Newtown West at 2896 South Eagle Road (read “Newtown Board of Supervisors Shoots Down Drive-thru Starbucks”).

Soon after, as expected, Starbucks filed a court appeal claiming the supervisors’ vote to deny the application was “arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion and contrary to law” (read “Starbucks Takes Newtown Township to Court”). Newtown claimed “The Board of Supervisors neither abused its discretion nor committed an error of law by denying the application.”

At the June 27, 2018, Board of Supervisors meeting, a settlement agreement was presented to the Board, which approved it by a 4-1 vote, with Supervisor Kyle Davis voting “nay.”

Newtown listed several reasons for denying the application in a written decision and order, dated June 14, 2018. The Township claimed, for example, that Starbucks failed to prove that “cars using the proposed drive-thru stacking lane would not conflict with through circulation;” e.g. access to the shopping center via South Eagle Road. 

The settlement agreement does NOT address that concern.

 

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News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
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John Mack Lists the Air Pollutants the ELCON Hazardous Waste Treatment Plant Would Be Allowed to Emit

At the March 13, 2019, Board of Supervisors meeting, John Mack called for the Board to re-affirm its opposition to the ELCON hazardous waste treatment plant proposed to be built in nearby Falls Township. Mack listed all the air pollutants that the PA Department of Environmental "Protection" may allow to be emitted from the plant.

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johnmacknewtown's curator insight, March 18, 7:43 AM

Further Reading:

  •  “Elcon Reapplies to DEP for Toxic Waste Facility Located Next to Delaware River”; http://sco.lt/88Ru3l
  • “A Crowded Meeting Pits Citizens Against the PA DEP Regarding the Elcon Proposal”; http://sco.lt/56CrQ0
  • “It May Take Lawsuits to Stop the Elcon Toxic Waste Incinerator”; http://sco.lt/68dz7p
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The Newtown Township Planning Commission Votes to Recommend Iron Hill Brewery Application

The Newtown Township Planning Commission Votes to Recommend Iron Hill Brewery Application | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The Newtown Township Planning Commission has recommended approval of Iron Hill Brewery's application to open a location at the Village at Newtown Shopping Center, township officials said.

 

The Iron Hill's application for a location at 2920 S. Eagle Road, which was reviewed Tuesday by the Planning Commission, will move along for approval in front of the Board of Supervisors.

 

The building where the brewpub is proposed is currently under construction, Township Manager Micah Lewis said.

 

If approved by the Supervisors, Iron Hill would join several new additions to the shopping center, which is currently undergoing a renovation.

 

[Iron Hill is also a restaurant and can serve food, whereas the Newtown Brewing Company located on Penns Trail will not serve prepared food.]

 

Related Stories:

johnmacknewtown's insight:

The Brewery will be located just across the outdoor amphitheater from Chipolte. But will you be able to get a burrito from Chipolte and a beer from Iron Mill and dine outdoors? You might have to sneak the beer over to Chipolte's outdoor eating area.

 

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Newtown Township Will Receive $611K In State Liquid Fuels Payments

Newtown Township Will Receive $611K In State Liquid Fuels Payments | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Newtown-area municipalities are slated to get more than $1 million in PennDOT liquid fuels payments this year.

According to PennDOT data from late January, the state has pledged $500.7 million in payments around the Keystone state this year. Checks were sent to towns this month.

Below is how much local towns will get: 

Newtown Borough – $73,602.84
Newtown Township – $611,209.38
Upper Makefield – $345,770.57
Wrightstown – $130,414.28


The liquid fuels payments can only be used for work on certain locally-maintained roadways.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Newtown Township will use the funds to "rehabilitate" (i.e., repave) 2.3 miles of roads in 2019. More about that here: http://bit.ly/2019roadprg 

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Newtown Township Seeks Grant to Assess Finances

Newtown Township Seeks Grant to Assess Finances | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

[The following is an excerpt from an article published in the Newtown Patch. Read the full article here.]

 

Claiming "stresses" on finances, Newtown Township has applied for a matching $40,000 PA Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) grant to implement an Early Intervention Program (EIP) that will assess the township's financial condition and identify additional sources of income.

[Listen to this podcast: "About DCED's Early Intervention Program"]

If the township is awarded the grant, it would have to match it by providing up to $40,000. The grant would be used to hire a consultant to develop a "multi-year trend analysis of historic financial data" and to perform an "assessment of current budget performance." A secondary, but an "extremely important objective," is to identify additional sources of revenue for the township.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

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MOD Pizza Said to be Opening In Newtown

MOD Pizza Said to be Opening In Newtown | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

MOD Pizza is opening a restaurant in the Village at Newtown Shopping Center at the end of 2019, the shopping center's leasing company [Brixmor] has confirmed to Patch.

 

The restaurant will be located in a 2,800-square-foot space and is scheduled to open sometime in the fourth quarter of the year, said Brixmor Property Group spokesperson Kristen Moore.

 

MOD Pizza is a Seattle-based, fast-casual chain that serves artisan-style pizzas and salads.

 

MOD Pizza is just the latest in many restaurants and eateries that are planning to open in the shopping center, which is currently undergoing renovations. The restaurant has not yet filed an application with the township, said Township Manager Micah Lewis.

 

Further Reading:

“Newtown Board of Supervisors Approve Chipotle To Be Located in the Village at Newtown Shopping Center”; http://sco.lt/5xG9jM

johnmacknewtown's insight:

From the photo it looks like the pizza boxes are lined with paper, which I'm guessing prevents the boxes from becoming greasy and thereby unrecylcable!

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Newtown Board of Supervisors Approve Chipotle To Be Located in the Village at Newtown Shopping Center

Newtown Board of Supervisors Approve Chipotle To Be Located in the Village at Newtown Shopping Center | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The Newtown Township Board of Supervisors will [considered] an application for a Chipotle at Village at Newtown Shopping Center during a meeting Wednesday [March 13, 2019].

 

Last month, the township's Planning Commission recommended the supervisors approve the Mexican eatery be permitted to open at 2930 South Eagle Road (read “Summary of February 27, 2019, BOS Public Meeting”). The supervisors will weigh in the conditional use application during the meeting, which starts at 7:00 p.m.

 

[T]he 2,500-square-foot restaurant will be located in a new building under construction at the shopping center.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

This application was approved unanimously at the March 13, 2019, Board of Supervisors meeting. There will be a wall along Durham Road that will prevent people from jumping over into Newtown and vice versa (seriously :)

 

The approved Brixmor (shopping center leasing agent) development plan allows for a maximum of 45% of retail square footage to be allocated to eating places. With the approval of Chipolte, about 15% of retail square footage is now allocated for that purpose.

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New Warrington Park to Offer Bluetooth Technology to Inform Visitors About Sights & Sites in the Park

New Warrington Park to Offer Bluetooth Technology to Inform Visitors About Sights & Sites in the Park | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Warrington Township and the Warrington Lions Club have raised $900,000 for the park, slated to open March 29. It is located at the former site of Twin Oaks Day Camp on Bradley Road.

Warrington Township and the Warrington Lions Club are partnering to open Lions Pride Park, a local spot that will enable a smartphone to be a guide.

The park, slated to open March 29, is at the former site of Twin Oaks Day Camp in Warrington. Lions Pride Park will link to a Bluetooth-enabled beacon app, which will serve as a park guidebook.

Beacons will be located near informative signs and when a smartphone app detects a beacon, a description will be played through the phone’s speaker. The description could be as simple as “oak tree” or as detailed as a webpage. Lions Pride Park will be one of the first parks in the Philadelphia area to have this app, local township officials said. It will also include GPS navigation to help the visually impaired move about the park more easily.

A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for 2 p.m. March 29 at the park at 3129 Bradley Road.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

I wish we could implement similar technology in Newtown Township parks! There were some proposals made:

 

At the May 6, 2018, public meeting of the Newtown Township Parks and Recreation Board, I proposed a project to use technology to identify sites within the parks to provide greater details for community awareness. This is a collaboration project with the Township’s Technology Committee. One thought was to have videos from drone fly-overs to create a two minute snippet which would be added to a web page devoted to the parks. The Technology Committee also recommended using geolocation technology to assist with park navigation (see presentation by Jo Vlastaris, former Chair of the Technology Committee, at the June 13, 2018, Board of Supervisors meeting). To date, these options have not been put before the the Board of Supervisors by the Parks and Rec Board.

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Newtown Township Gives the Final Go-Ahead for the Renovation of the Fred Beans Dealership on Sycamore Street

Newtown Township Gives the Final Go-Ahead for the Renovation of the Fred Beans Dealership on Sycamore Street | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The Newtown Township board of supervisors has finally formalized plans for a major renovation at the Fred Beans of Newtown dealership and auto body shop at 10 North Sycamore Street.

 

The Doylestown-based auto dealership, which had acquired Bill Marsh Ford in 2016, is investing millions of dollars into upgrading the five-acre property.

 

With the latest action executing the land development agreement, that renovation can get underway.

 

At the Feb. 13 meeting, the board voted 4-0, without discussion, to formally sign the final plans which the supervisors had approved early last year.

 

Voting to execute the agreement were Chairman Phil Calabro, along with fellow Supervisors Linda Bobrin, John Mack and Dennis Fisher. Supervisor Kyle Davis did not attend the meeting.

 

The site, which lies between Washington Avenue and Jefferson Street, will see building renovations totaling 7,419 square feet added to the 34,694 square-foot showroom and body shop.

 

The two buildings' frontages will be extended closer to Sycamore Street in order to meet the Town Commercial (T/C) Zoning District whose goal is to create a feeling of a downtown street with building fronting the street and parking in the rear.

 

The auto dealership will have a new facade and no cars will be displayed in front of the showroom. The auto dealer’s attorney Don Marshall had told the board that the building has to be “more attractive to customers,” noting that automobiles no longer have to be set up for show as much as they have in the past. [But, as can be seen from the rendering above, a few cars will still be displayed along Sycamore Street in a 9’x18’ “inventory parking” area, which technically is NOT located in “front of the showroom”.]

 

The auto body shop will now also have a stone facade, similar to the La Stalla Italian Market which opened down the street in early 2017.

 

The Town Commercial District, which was established in 2012, does not allow auto dealers, so any additions and improvements had to be approved by the township’s Zoning Hearing Board as a non-conforming use.

 

Fred Beans will have six less signs to be more consistent with the Town Commercial District.

 

In addition, the four current entrances to the property will be reduced to three, with one of them being only one way.

 

Fred Beans had worked closely with the township and the Historical Architectural Review Board (HARB) to develop designs for the project that fit the streetscape, even though the site is technically not within the township’s historic district.

 

As part of that plan, Fred Beans will dedicate 10,890 square feet of open space on the northern-end of the property to Newtown Township. It would have several picnic tables, trash cans and a bicycle rack for public use.

 

A sidewalk will also be installed across the front of the Fred Beans property which will complete the missing section of the existing Sycamore Street walkway. Existing light poles will be relocated in order to minimize the auto showroom’s interior lighting onto Sycamore Street.

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Guest Opinion: "EPA Playing Us for Fools" Regarding PFAS in Local Drinking Water, Says Warminster Resident

Guest Opinion: "EPA Playing Us for Fools" Regarding PFAS in Local Drinking Water, Says Warminster Resident | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Thursday marks the third anniversary of when firefighting foam sprang to life in a “special report” on the front page of local papers. The top of page one shouted, “Unclear and uncertain danger,” announcing a water crisis in Bucks and Montgomery counties that continues unabated. The latest headline accuses the EPA of spinning wheels.

 

In 2015, the Department of the Navy posted a small notice for a public information session set during a workday regarding contamination at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Willow Grove in Horsham and the Johnsville Naval Air Warfare Center in Warminster. We locals were used to this — we all knew the bases were Superfund sites.

 

We’ve got many sick friends and neighbors. As an A-10 Warthog flies and firefighting foam seeps, only 3 miles separate the two bases — both have tested at the highest levels in the nation.

 

This has long been known and artfully hidden from the public. The earliest concerns date to reports from Dupont in 1954. More than a decade ago, the National Fire Prevention Association’s Committee on firefighting foam stated that consumption of PFOA and PFOS was a death warrant.

 

Although the EPA lowered its “advisory” limit to 70 parts per trillion, ppt, Harvard University Chan School of Public Health said their research showed that the level should be 1 ppt. Richard Clapp, the leading researcher, spoke at the only meeting held in Warminster that was sponsored by the township’s Environmental Advisory Council. He told us that New Jersey’s limit of 14 ppt was closer to what was needed, but is still inadequate.

 

If we stop being mesmerized by the EPA, Navy and Department of Defense spinning wheels, we’ll realize that we’re being played for fools. Veterans have taken the brunt. Government strategy has been out of the same playbook that they use for traumatic brain injuries. They used it against Agent Orange claims, PTSD, shell shock and a host of other veteran issues.

 

Our answer now lies at the state level. We need to actively support Senate and House bills like Tom Murt’s — co-sponsored by Madeleine Dean and others — to set a 5 ppt limit for Pennsylvania. The Delaware Riverkeeper Network, DRN, submitted a similar petition for rulemaking to the Environmental Quality Board, EQB.

 

All our local legislators, Gov. Wolf and Sen. Casey are on our side. We, the people, just need to step it up. It’s our water, our health. Over 80,000 local residents and many veterans are depending on what we do. Let’s end the spinning wheels.

 

[Warminster resident Larry Menkes is the CEO of Veterans Green Jobs Initiative that finds green jobs for wounded warriors.]

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johnmacknewtown's curator insight, February 26, 8:49 AM

Further Reading:

  • “Editorial: EPA Spins Its Wheels on Setting Maximum Contaminant Level for PFAS”; http://sco.lt/5uSirA
  • “As EPA Launches National PFAS Plan, Pennsylvania Says Its People “Can’t Wait” for Federal Government & Launches Its Own Plan to Set Lower Health Limits for PFOA and PFOS”; http://sco.lt/7EkKRc
  • “Perfluorinated Compounds Detected in Newtown Township's Water Supply”; http://sco.lt/70ujU9
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Philadelphia PD Captain John L. Hearn Sworn in as Newtown Township's Police Chief

Philadelphia PD Captain John L. Hearn Sworn in as Newtown Township's Police Chief | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

At the February 27, 2019, Board of Supervisors meeting, John L. Hearn, the Commanding Officer of Philadelphia Police Department's 14th Police District, was sworn in as Newtown Township's new Chief of Police by  District Court Judge Mick Petrucci.

The 14th District in Northwest Philadelphia covers the Chestnut Hill and Germantown sections, as well as East and West Mt. Airy.

Hearn was selected by the Supervisors after an exhaustive process that involved screening over 20 applicants.

 

In my review I noted the following about Hearn: http://bit.ly/2HdkYsH 

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Newtown Township Supervisors Say "No Means No" When It Comes to Arcadia Green III Planned Residential Development

Newtown Township Supervisors Say "No Means No" When It Comes to Arcadia Green III Planned Residential Development | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Philadelphia-based Arcadia at Newtown Holdings had signaled in two legal notices and a December zoning appeal it was considering its proposed 76-home community “deemed approved,” even though supervisors were unanimous in denying the project in mid-November.

 

The crux of the developer’s contention was that the board’s decision documents were not certified, and supervisors had not signed a copy sent to Arcadia before Nov. 25, when a 60-day window for tentative approval of planned residential developments expired.

 

But the supervisors have stood by their decision and on Friday appealed Arcadia’s notices stating the project’s “deemed approval,” requesting a county judge’s order affirming that the proposed 23 single-family detached homes and 53 townhomes off Buck Road and the Newtown Bypass are not approved.

 

In the appeal, township Solicitor David Sander said he sent Arcadia attorney John VanLuvanee the decision documents, outlining the supervisors’ findings and conclusions following project hearings, on Nov. 24, the same day as Micah Lewis, the township’s manager and custodian of records, certified the decision.

 

Though Sander sent VanLuvanee identical documents bearing the supervisors’ signatures in mid-December, at the Arcadia attorney’s request, the township solicitor said his Nov. 24 email, in tandem with each supervisor’s verbal denial of the project at a Nov. 14 meeting, met the applicable requirements of the municipal planning code.

 

Arcadia has submitted to Newtown Township, and received denials on three configurations for “Arcadia Green” homes through the tentative planned residential development process since 2015.

 

[Read “Arcadia Green PRD Three Peat: Denied Again!” which was posted on November 15, 2019.] 

 

Officials denied the latest version of the plans because of the “extremely deleterious impact” they believed it would have on residents in neighboring communities as well as “dangerous traffic conditions,” including potential lane crossing and illegal turn issues, they said could arise from proposed traffic changes, per decision documents.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

At the November 14, 2019 BOS meeting, I said: “After listening to all the testimony, reading the reports of experts, and listening to residents of surrounding communities, I will vote to deny the current Arcadia PRD because I think it would be unsafe for residents of that development – should it go forward – to exit and enter the development. Also, let’s not forget the additional traffic it would bring to the intersection of Buck Road and the Bypass. Lastly, the plan for a U-turn to allow access to the Bypass is totally impractical, unsafe, and will cause major delays in my opinion, which seems to also be the opinion of PennDOT and other experts.”

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Newtown Township Planners Recommend Conditional Use Approval for Chipotle Mexican Grill

Newtown Township Planners Recommend Conditional Use Approval for Chipotle Mexican Grill | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Chipotle Mexican Grill is a step closer to bringing its fast causal restaurant to the Newtown area.

BucksLocalNews.com was in attendance Tuesday night as the Newtown Township Planning Commission voted unanimously to recommend that the board of supervisors grant conditional use approval for the chain to locate an eatery at the Village of Newtown Shopping Center at Eagle and Durham roads.

According to attorney Joe Blackburn, who is representing Brixmor, the owner of the shopping center, the new 2,500 square foot eatery would be located in a yet-to-be-built “L-shaped” addition to the shopping center fronting on West Road between the Corner Bakery Cafe and Eagle Road and backing up to Durham Road.

Under an “aggressive timeline,” construction of the new addition is expected to begin this year and be ready for occupancy sometime in the fourth quarter of the year, a representative from Brixmor told the planners.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

Planning Commission Vice Chairperson Peggy Driscoll presented the following synopsis to the Newtown BOS on February 27, 2019:

 

Chipotle Mexican Grill – Applicant applied for an E-5 (eating place) and E-6 (eating place, drive through) use in the Village at Newtown Shopping Center on Lot 1. This is part of the new construction and is located next to the proposed amphitheater. The application is for an eating place occupying 2,427 sq. ft. Site improvements are part of the overall Brixmor development. The designation of “drive through” relates to take-out food; there will not be an actual drive through area. The hours of operation will be 10:45am to 10:00pm, seven days/week with a maximum of 6-10 employees for each of the three shifts. Deliveries would be made 3 times/week using 52 ft. semi-trailers at night between the hours of 8pm and 8am. Applicant described various locations of trash receptacles, and agreed to keep sidewalk areas clear of obstructions and have no outdoor music of any kind. A motion was proposed to approve the conditional use, and the motion passed unanimously.

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Newtown Seeks to Hire FireFighter

Newtown Seeks to Hire FireFighter | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

$63,981 Starting Salary, plus Excellent Benefits

 

 

Applicants must possess:

• High School Diploma or Equivalent

• IFSAC or Pro-Board Firefighter I Certification Required, Firefighter II Preferred

• IFSAC or Pro-Board Fire Inspector I Preferred

• Hazmat Operations Level Certification

• Vehicle Rescue Technician or Equivalent

• Pump Operations Certification

FEMANIMS Certification ICS 100, ICS 200, ICS 700, ICS 800

Current EMT Certification

Minimum 3 Years Fire Service Experience

Valid Driver's License Required, CDL Preferred

Excellent Physical and Mental Condition

Proficient in General Computer Skills

 

More details here: http://bit.ly/EMSjobPost

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How Does Newtown Township’s Website Stack Up?

How Does Newtown Township’s Website Stack Up? | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

A recent analysis of municipal websites and their social media pages by Bucks County Courier Times (BCCT) found that most sites succeed as “one-stop shops for information — budgets, agendas and minutes, videos of meetings and planning documents — that residents can access,” but others offer the “bare minimum.”

Where does the Newtown Township website sit on this “spectrum?”

 

Of concern to me are meeting minutes and video recordings of Board of Supervisors (BOS) meetings. I’m primarily concerned about how much detail is included in minutes and how easy (or difficult) it is to search for and find specific information in the minutes or in the video recordings.

 

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Local Protest Over Trump's Emergency Declaration Held in Middletown Outside Brian Fitzpatrick's Office

Local Protest Over Trump's Emergency Declaration Held in Middletown Outside Brian Fitzpatrick's Office | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

About 80 people came out to Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick’s district office in Langhorne on Monday to rally against the recent White House emergency declaration along the southern border.

President Donald Trump’s emergency declaration had about 80 protesters out in the cold Monday in Middletown urging Republican Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick to oppose what they described as a “fake emergency.”

Activists gathered at Fitzpatrick’s 1st District office Newtown-Langhorne Road to rally against Trump’s Feb. 15 proclamation declaring a “security and humanitarian crisis” at the country’s southern border.

Doubts of the emergency declaration’s legality and its legitimacy followed soon after Friday’s announcement, with Monday’s protest a call to action for Fitzpatrick’s office.

“President Trump’s declaration of a national emergency to build his border wall is an unconstitutional attempt to circumvent Congress,” a petition circulated by protest organizers PA Statewide Indivisible states.

The petition asks Fitzpatrick to vote in favor of any resolution enacting the National Emergencies Act of 1976, allowing Congress to end the emergency declaration.

Fitzpatrick, who was not as his office Monday, has been critical of the declaration.

“It sets a bad precedent for the Executive Branch to make such declarations. Legislating must remain in the Legislative Branch,” he said in a statement last week.

Former state House 178th District Rep. Helen Tai and past Democratic candidates for office in Bucks County spoke during the early evening demonstration amid dropping temperatures and chilling wind gusts.

Tai and other speakers said the pressure for opposition from Fitzpatrick and other federal elected officials was necessary to have their voices heard in Washington.

“Please stand up for us and tell all of your fellow representatives that you’re against this and you’re going to vote against Trump doing this,” said Tai, of Solebury.

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A Deeper Understanding of the "Redsk*ns" Conversation


This is a guest blog post contributed by Arla Patch who I met at a recent weeklong series of hearings held by the PA Human Rights Commission at Bucks County Community College in Newtown Township. Ms. Patch was the Community Engagement Coordinator for the Maine Wabanaki State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission when she lived in Maine. She now lives in Quakertown.


Why do some communities hang on with all their might to the term “Redsk*ns,” which is considered a racist slur by many, while other communities hear the Native American voices that ask them to release it? In particular, why do the largely Euro-America members of the Nashaminy school board, teachers and parents say they use the racial slur “R word” to HONOR Native Americans and yet attack, berate and highly disrespect the very Native People who are asking them to stop using it? Even when Native American members of the same community insist that it DOES NOT honor them?

 

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johnmacknewtown's insight:

Further Reading:

  • “Term "Redsk*n" is Offensive, Neshaminy Teacher & Former Student Playwickian Editor Testify”; http://sco.lt/7tgRmL
  • “Use of Term "Redsk*n" by Neshaminy HS is Not Racist, Neshaminy Witness Testifies”; http://sco.lt/6xn5KD
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Beer and Birds Need Clean Delaware River Watershed Water, Say Audubon Pennsylvania & Local Craft Brewers – Including Newtown Brewing Company

Beer and Birds Need Clean Delaware River Watershed Water, Say Audubon Pennsylvania & Local Craft Brewers – Including Newtown Brewing Company | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The National Audubon Society and Audubon Pennsylvania launched, on Jan. 31, the Brewers for the Delaware River Association, a coalition of craft brewers in the Delaware River Watershed united to promote the protection of the watershed as a reliable, clean water source that benefits the people, birds and communities of the region.

 

“Birds, people and brewers all rely on clean water to survive,” said Julie Hill-Gabriel, vice president of water conservation at the National Audubon Society. “Teaming up with local brewers throughout the Delaware River Watershed will not only bolster Audubon’s efforts to preserve the home of more than 400 bird species — like red-headed woodpeckers, sanderlings and red knots; but it also inspires economic growth for local businesses and industries that depend on the health of the watershed and its water.”

 

Making up at least 90 percent of beer, water is an essential ingredient that gives each brew a uniqueness that depends on the quality of the water in each local community. The newly formed coalition joined forces under a shared concern of preserving a steady supply of clean water from Delaware River Watershed, which provides drinking water for more than 15 million Americans across four Atlantic states: Delaware, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.

 

In January, the National Audubon Society delivered a joint letter signed by 12 breweries from the Delaware River Watershed to the 116th U.S. Congress, urging members to support the watershed and the small businesses that rely on it for economic success. The signees called for congressional members’ support by providing robust funding for the Delaware River Basin Restoration Program in years to come.

 

To date, members of the Brewers of the Delaware River Association include 2SP Brewing Co., Baba’s Brew, Bangor Trust Brewing, Bonn Place Brewing Co., Flying Fish Brewing Co., Goose Island Brewhouse Philadelphia, Newtown Brewing Co., Shrewd Fox Brewery, Tannery Run Brew Works, Tuned Up Brewing Co. and Zed’s Beer Bado Brewing.

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Newtown Supervisors receive long-awaited fire, emergency services study; recommends combining paid firefighting staff with volunteer force & moving station to Sycamore Street

Newtown Supervisors receive long-awaited fire, emergency services study; recommends combining paid firefighting staff with volunteer force & moving station to Sycamore Street | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

The main recommendation: the all-volunteer Newtown Fire Association (NFA) and the township’s nine-member paid firefighting and emergency services staff should be combined under one roof to ensure better response times, as well as a better overall command structure.

 

The 62-page report also recommends that a more centrally-located fire station be built to house both squads.

 

[Read “Newtown Township Releases the 2018 Fire and Emergency Services Study”; http://bit.ly/firestudypost for a more complete list of recommendations.]

 

Fire protection consultant Harry R. Carter, PhD of Aldelphia, N.J. discussed what needs to be done and the equipment which must be purchased to ensure that fire services are adequate over the next decade for the Newtown area.

 

[View this video clip  from the January 23, 2019, BOS meeting, which features Dr. Carter's answers to the many questions posed by the Supervisors.]

 

As far as new equipment, he said that a 75-foot ladder should be purchased, as well as a Quick Response Vehicle (QRV) which would hold a two-member crew and provide mostly a first-aid function in emergencies.

 

One of the current township fire trucks has more than 133,000 miles on it and purchasing a new fire vehicle is in the township’s future capital plans.

 

Former township manager Kurt Ferguson had pushed for the fire study, claiming that such a report is needed before the township can purchase any new fire trucks, which can each cost several hundred thousand dollars.

 

The comprehensive study was budgeted at $30,000 when put out for bid in November 2017, and was to include the Newtown Fire Association, as well as the township’s Emergency Service Department (ESD).

 

For the 2019 budget year which began Jan. 1, $1,043,537 is earmarked for the township’s emergency services, with $75,000 set aside in the capital budget for buying a new fire truck.

 

This year’s budget also includes another $175,100 to fund the Newtown Fire Association.

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Some Council Rock North Parents Livid Over Upcoming Concert, Which is Now Canceled!

Some Council Rock North Parents Livid Over Upcoming Concert, Which is Now Canceled! | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

[UPDATE: March 2nd FOP Concert Canceled
After conversations between the Bucks County Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 53 and the Council Rock School District, the FOP has decided to cancel its scheduled concert on Saturday, March 2, 2019 that would have featured the band “Confederate Railroad.” This concert, which was never a district-sponsored event, was scheduled to be held at one of our schools through the district’s facility usage process. - Susan O'Grady, Council Rock Community.]

 

A country music concert event scheduled in March at Council Rock North has angered many parents and community members, who are taking issue with the band's name as well as song titles and lyrics.

 

Confederate Railroad has been booked by the Bucks County Fraternal Order of Police to play its annual Country Music Show event on March 2 at the high school in Newtown. The event is not sponsored by the district.

 

But some parents are not pleased the district is permitting a band with such song titles as "She Took It Like A Man," "Psycho Bitch From Hell," and "White Trash with Money" in their repertoire to play at the local school. Further, opponents state, the band name [and logo – see image] is offensive and promotes slavery.

 

A group of the concerned parents have launched a petition demanding the district cancel the booked performance.

 

"Not only is the name of the band offensive, their song titles and lyrics are degrading to women and many others as well. They refer to people as 'white trash,' 'rednecks,' and 'trashy women,'" says the petition, which was launched by the Council Rock Concerned Community Members group.

 

The petition makes clear the event is not sponsored by the district, but takes issue with the fact that it is even being permitted on school grounds.

 

As of Thursday afternoon, 38 people have signed the petition. You can view it here.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

I signed the petition!

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The Reorganization of Newtown Township's Leadership 2019

The Reorganization of Newtown Township's Leadership 2019 | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Organization of the Board of Supervisors

  • Phil Calabro elected as Chairman
  • Linda Bobrin elected as Vice-Chairman
  • John Mack elected as Secretary/Assistant Treasurer

 

REPORTING DIRECTLY TO THE BOARD OF SUPERVISORS TO SERVE THE TOWNSHIP WITH COMPENSATION FOR 2019

  • Micah Lewis appointed as Township Manager
  • Micah Lewis appointed as Township Treasurer [Mr. Lewis explained that as treasurer he is responsible for accounts payable and receivable and the budget process. Having the manager as treasurer is a common practice in Pennsylvania.]
  • The Law Offices of Sean Kilkenny appointed as Township Solicitor
  • Briana Stobbe appointed as Board of Supervisors Recording Secretary
  • Extend contract of Kurt M. Ferguson as Management Consultant ($18,000 for "Professional Services" is included in the 2019 budget to cover this expense)

 

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When It Comes to Zoning Variances for the Sit. Stay. Kennel, Some Residents Will Not Let Sleeping Dogs Lie

When It Comes to Zoning Variances for the Sit. Stay. Kennel, Some Residents Will Not Let Sleeping Dogs Lie | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Five residents living near Sit. Stay. filed the appeal Friday, arguing the township zoning hearing board issued two variances without proof that the kennel, and noise from its dogs, would not “alter the essential character of the neighborhood.”

 

Five residents living along Winding Lane, near doggie day care and boarding business Sit. Stay., filed an appeal Friday in county court, challenging township zoners’ decision to render the kennel a permitted business.

 

The zoning hearing board issued Sit. Stay. two variances in December, allowing it to operate on the 18.8-acre Roberts family farm off Washington Crossing Road, short of a 25-acre minimum space requirement for kennels in the township’s conservation management district, and located 205 feet, rather than at least 300 feet from one neighboring home. [Read “Sit, Stay Doggie Day Care Allowed to Stay Says Newtown Township Zoning Hearing Board”]

 

The appeal argues the zoners approved the variances in error because Sit. Stay. did not prove that the farm’s “unique physical conditions” posed unnecessary hardship preventing it from being used in conformity with local code. The appeal was filed by five residents, four of whom belong to one family.

 

“This is a case of self-created hardship, as a result of the applicant’s decision to have (a dog kennel) use on the property due to (her) desire to maximize the land for her highest financial gain,” said attorney Scott MacNair in court documents.

 

Sit. Stay. met the “unnecessary hardship” standard because it could not change its acreage to meet the minimum space requirement for kennels; the business also presented evidence of economic hardship, per the zoning decision.

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Arcadia at Newtown Claims Its 3rd PRD "Has Been Deemed Approved" Because of Failure of Timely Action By Board of Supervisors. Newtown Solicitor Says It's a "Frivolous Claim"

Arcadia at Newtown Claims Its 3rd PRD "Has Been Deemed Approved" Because of Failure of Timely Action By Board of Supervisors. Newtown Solicitor Says It's a "Frivolous Claim" | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

A Philadelphia developer is continuing to push its reasoning that a 76-home development Newtown Township supervisors voted to deny has the green light to proceed because of a technicality.

 

Arcadia at Newtown Holdings published a legal notice Friday advising that its proposal for 23 single-family detached homes and 53 townhomes off Buck Road and the Newtown Bypass “has been deemed approved” under the state’s municipalities planning code “for failure of the Board of Supervisors ... to act on the application within (the) time period required.”

 

The supervisors denied the homes Nov. 14 and township Solicitor David Sander emailed Arcadia attorney John VanLuvanee the board’s decision, outlining its findings and conclusions, on Nov. 24, the day before a 60-day window for tentative approval of planned residential developments expired Nov. 25.

 

The notice says the “decision” approving the project was made on Nov. 26. VanLuvanee argued in two county court cases — a complaint filed Friday and a zoning appeal filed in late December — that the decision Arcadia received Nov. 24 was not certified, and supervisors did not sign it until mid-December, outside the 60-day window.

 

[Related content: “Arcadia Green Three Peat: Sues Newtown Again!”; http://sco.lt/7yKv9F]

 

Though Newtown Township has not yet formally responded to the complaint or appeal, Sander said that officials would “fight these frivolous claims in court at every turn to protect the rights of Newtown’s residents.”

 

“The developer filed this legal notice to try to win its case on a technicality by saying that the board’s decision was not rendered in a timely manner. The board’s decision was rendered in a timely manner,” Sander said. “The developer chooses to rely on obscure technicalities to attempt to overturn the will of the board of supervisors and the significant concerns of residents. The township will vigorously defend its decision in court.”

 

2018 marked the third time Arcadia presented, and was denied plans for homes since 2015 through the tentative planned residential development (PRD) process [read “Summary of September 12, 2018, BOS Public Meeting”). The three municipalities under the Newtown Area Zoning Jointure (JMZO) voted in September to abolish that process, which allowed developers to bypass the traditional approval process for developments in lieu of at least one public hearing.

johnmacknewtown's insight:

The public notice shown here appeared in the January 18, 2019, issue of the Bucks County Courier Times. The case is yet to be decided in court.

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Agenda Highlights for the January 23, 2019 BOS Meeting

Agenda Highlights for the January 23, 2019 BOS Meeting | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Presentation: 2018 Fire and Emergency Service Study - Dr. Harry Carter, Ph.D. For a summary of the recommendations proposed, read “Newtown Township Releases the 2018 Fire and Emergency Services Study” http://bit.ly/firestudypost

 

Land Development: Bucks County Community College - Waiver of Stormwater Management Requirements

 

Manager's Report

Resolution establishing procurement procedures for the hiring of professionals for Pension Plans, in accordance with Act 44

 

Motion to approve the resolution authorizing the Township Manager to make application and to allocate a maximum of $40,000 local match to apply for the DCED Early Intervention Program Grant.

 

Consideration to approve the Resolution making a supplemental appropriation of funds in the 2019 Budget to allow $40,000 to be allocated for the DCED Early Intervention Program Grant

 

Listen to Andrew Sheaf, Local Government Policy Manager at the PA Department of Community & Economic Development (DCED) as he answers Newtown Township Board of Supervisors' questions about the Early Intervention Program (EIP) at the November 19, 2018 Work Session meeting. http://bit.ly/DCEDpreso

 

Motion to purchase 3 police vehicles through Fred Beans Inc. through COSTARS in the amount of $92,269.00

 

Motion to purchase lighting and equipment for 3 police vehicles through HAVIS, Inc. through COSTARS in the amount of $36,730.08

 

Motion to advertise for the purchase of two police motorcycles, lighting, and equipment through PennBID

 

PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Grant Discussion: Mr. Lewis has been identifying grant opportunities to implement the trail plan. The priority is to complete the Lower Dolington Trail funding as it is the number one trail on the list. The DCNR recreation and conservation grants program will be accepting applications from January 22 to April 10.

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Macedonia Baptist Church in Newtown Program for Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service: "I Have a Dream LIVES" Guest Speaker

Macedonia Baptist Church in Newtown Program for Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service: "I Have a Dream LIVES" Guest Speaker | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Macedonia Baptist Church in Newtown presents its annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. program on Monday, Jan. 21 beginning at 7 p.m. The theme is “I Have A Dream LIVES.” The guest speaker will be Rabbi Anna Boswell-Levy from Congregation Kol Emet of Yardley. The church is located at 218 North State Street, Newtown 18940.

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Chipotle Planning Newtown Location, But Has Not Yet Submitted Any Plans to Township

Chipotle Planning Newtown Location, But Has Not Yet Submitted Any Plans to Township | News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents | Scoop.it

Chipotle has plans to open a location in Newtown, company representatives have confirmed to Patch.

But key specifics — like where and when — are not currently available, said Erin Wolford, senior director of external communications at Chipotle.

Wolford said the company will be opening a Mexican grill locally but "we're most likely looking at next year."

Wolford said she had no details to share relating to where specifically the restaurant will be opening. "Stay patient people of Newtown! We hope to get there soon," Wolford said.

Newtown Township manager Micah Lewis confirmed on Tuesday that the chain has not yet submitted an application to the municipality.

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Curated by johnmacknewtown
I am a retired small businessman who has lived in Newtown Township PA since 1995. The opinions expressed here are solely mine and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Other Topics
Good Government
A good government is an open government where transparency reigns supreme. These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Human Relations
This board is dedicated to promoting the value of diversity and addressing discrimination based on age, race, color, gender, religion, creed, culture, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, ancestry, national origin and disability. These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
News of Interest to Newtown Area Residents
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Public Health & Safety
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources. They focus on public health issues such as opioid addiction, water and air quality, emergency services, traffic, crime, etc. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
Summaries of Newtown Board of Supervisors Meetings
These summaries are based on official minutes and/or audio and video recordings of public meetings.